The Higgs boson is frequently referred to as ‘the god particle’, a name adopted after Leon Lederman’s book. Nobel Prize-winning physicist Leon Lederman, the Higgs boson is a particle believed to bestow mass on all other particles.
Higgs boson is a hypothetical elementary particle predicted to exist by the Standard Model of particle physics. It is the only Standard Model particle not yet observed. An experimental observation of it would help to explain how otherwise massless elementary particles cause matter to have mass. If it exists, the Higgs boson is an integral and pervasive component of the material world.
As of August 2011, the Higgs boson has yet to be confirmed experimentally,despite large efforts invested in accelerator experiments at Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN and Fermilab. The Higgs mechanism, which gives mass to vector bosons, was theorized in August 1964 by François Englert and Robert Brout (“boson scalaire”);in October of the same year by Peter Higgs, working from the ideas of Philip Anderson; and independently by Gerald Guralnik, C. R. Hagen, and Tom Kibble, who worked out the results by the spring of 1963. The three papers written on this discovery by Guralnik, Hagen, Kibble, Higgs, Brout, and Englert were each recognized as milestone papers by Physical Review Letters 50th anniversary celebration.
It plays a key role in the standard model of physics (the theory on which physicists base their whole understanding of matter), proving the existence or absence of the Higgs boson could change the entire foundation of physics, indicating the existence of particles and forces not yet imagined and paving the way for an entirely new set of laws.
“The Higgs boson is interesting because it is the only reasonable explanation we have for the origin of mass,” says Dave Rainwater, a researcher at FermiLab. “Without the Higgs, all fundamental particles would be massless, and the universe would be very different. The weak nuclear forces wouldn’t be weak at all, for instance, so the elemental composition of the cosmos would be radically different, stars would shine differently, and we probably wouldn’t exist.”
And the payoff for whoever discovers the Higgs boson? Nothing less than a Nobel Prize. “Its discovery would be one of the crowning achievements of modern science, and validate decades of intense research,” says John Conway, a professor at Rutgers